I had no idea I could get so emotional over a children's book about a boy and his fox. But I did. Sam will tell you. I was crying texting him venting about how beautiful but heartbreaking this book was. Admittedly, I do get very emotionally invested in books...
What was perhaps my favourite aspect of this book was the style of narration. It was from both Pax's (the fox) perspective and Peter's (his owner) perspective which added a really magical feel to the book. Seeing what felt like an incredibly accurate view of a human from an animal and the destruction we as a species continue to cause. I have always said that writing about political or sensitive topics in general through the lens of a child affords a certain innocence to the subject that truly makes the reader question the validity of their opinion. A child can be blunt without as many repercussions.
Pax is set during the beginning of a war and feels very much of the time, whether its the first or second world war I can't be sure. The entire novel hinges on this fact that the entire country is preparing for war. Peter is sent to live with his grandfather after his father has volunteered to fight and his beloved companion Pax couldn't go with him. The story is the two of them finding each other again and learning things about their world along the way. Often from the most unlikely of sources. There are some beautiful if unusual friendships and one of my favourite least seen kind of friendship. The kind that transcends ages. Peter makes friends with an older lady who lives out in a cabin and its just so heartwarming.
You will definitely be crying with this one but in the best way possible.
Author: Sara Pennypacker, Illustrated by Jon Klassen
Publisher: Harper Collins
Have you read Pax*?
What did you think?
Thank you for reading,